Quick Study: Custom Content Usage Soars; SMBs Buzz Over Social Media; Hispanic Group Tracks Corporate Inclusion

â–¶ Content—Much of the Time: According to the 2011 “Spending Study” conducted by the Custom Content Council in partnership with ContentWise, the total spend on branded content (or custom publishing) in 2011 was $1.9 million per company, the highest level ever. Further cementing growth in 2012: 16% of communicators reported that their companies are shifting aggressively from traditional marketing into branded content. Other findings include: • The biggest driver of growth from 2010 to 2011 was in publication budgets, which increased by 68%. • Respondents are most bullish on growth in electronic content (39%); other forms (37%); and print (16%). • Top reasons for using branded content are: to educate customers (49%); for customer retention (26%); and improving brand loyalty (14%). • For all companies (those who did and did not outsource), the average total branded content spend on outsourcing was $324,000—the highest amount ever recorded. PRN Source: Custom Content Council/ContentWise â–¶ SMBs Flock to Social Media: Small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) are buzzing over social media. A Borrell Associates study of 4,000 SMBs finds that local businesses expected to spend $1.1 billion in ads on social media platforms in 2011. That figure, says Borrell, should double in 2012. Other findings include: • Nearly two-thirds of SMBs report that in 2011 they had a social media presence— most notably on Facebook. Borrell expects that figure will jump to almost 80% before the end of 2012. • SMBs listed social media as the third-highest category in online spending in the coming year, at 13.7%; e-mail marketing (17.4%) and search engine marketing/keyword purchase (15.1%) are the top two spend categories. • Borrell forecasts that the next five years will see spending by SMBs on social site marketing increase sevenfold, to $7.8 billion in 2016. Source: Borrell Associates Inc. [Editor’s Note: For more about social media ads, see the story in the 12/19/2011 issue of PR New s.] â–¶ CSR and Hispanics: Corporations in 2011 contributed less than 3% of total philanthropic dollars distributed to Hispanic communities, finds The Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility’s (HACR) 2011 Corporate Inclusion Index, which tracks the Hispanic inclusion practices of Fortune 100 companies. The four pillars of CSR and market reciprocity looked at: employment, procurement, philanthropy and governance. Other findings include: • There was a decrease of Hispanics in the C-suite from 8% in 2010 to 7% in 2011, while representation on corporate boards saw an increase from 6.46% in 2010 to 8.33% in 2011. • Procurement dollars spend for Hispanic-owned businesses increased about 1.5% between 2010 and 2011. PRN Source: Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility  

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